Oct 07, 2013 - 9:51 am
Reflecting today on how much I have to be thankful for: a wonderful husband, dear friends and family, my garden, my faith, my breast cancer support group.... I am also thankful for being what is called an outlier. A cancer outlier is someone who lives longer with the disease than is expected. I was diagnosed almost 27 years ago with Stage 3 breast cancer. I have been Stage 4 for 8 years. The fight is more difficult these days, but I am not giving up. Being an outlier is a mixed blessing though--I have lost so many, many friends to this disease. Attitude, I believe, has nothing to do with it (studies have demonstrated a positive attitude is not correlated with survival) and I have known too many women with amazing attitudes who have succumbed to buy that myth. Being educated and compliant may help, but mostly, I believe, I have just been blessed with having a more responsive type of cancer. I miss my dear friends who have lost their battle to the beast, but I am grateful for having had them in my life. They have all taught me so much: positivity, grace under fire, humor and how to die with incredible dignity and courage.